As representatives of the people in D.C. debate the next big stimulus package that will probably head our way in March, it's important - after much criticism has been levied on the government's financial status - to take a step back and admire a few recent announcements in Livingston Parish.
First, Carter's Grocery made the bold move to relocate south, down Cockerham, to a new location on the corner of Hatchell Lane.
This is a huge move for the Cain family. They'll lease out their original location at the corner of Hatchell and Lockhart and open up a new, modern, and larger facility to serve the public.
There will also be space for growth, with up to four spots for commercial leases for other businesses.
Carter's will offer a new curbside service as well, putting them into a shooting match with WalMart. A bold move, but the relocation effort to that spot also prevents WalMart from placing one of their 'Neighborhood' concepts on that land.
Speaking of bold moves, the Livingston Parish School Board not only pushed faculty and staff through intense training for distance learning, but partnered with the state and federal government to find new ways to bring connectivity to households.
Combined with the virtual school, the system is moving in a direction that allows them to serve future generations in a way never before thought possible - and to serve the needs of children who might need to stay home during this pandemic to protect themselves, or their families.
The system isn't the only group considering the future, either. With the Nov. 3 ballot now set, eyes turn toward the Town of Livingston which has become one of the hot spots for growth in Livingston Parish.
The town has three packed races - mayor, chief of police, and board of aldermen - with several candidates who skew toward younger demographics.
Many have announced on social media and in this paper that they want to have an affect on the direction of their town, and come this fall - if they win - those men and women will have their chance to leave their name on the history books.
Finally, an economic indicator which affects all of those issues continues to show promise - 250 detached, single-family homes sold in Livingston Parish in June alone. The parish is setting a pace to outdo 2019, which was a red-letter year in real estate sales by a large margin - nearly 20%.
Does COVID-19 have a negative effect on our community? Yes. Has it caused devastation to some? Absolutely, and they will need help moving forward. Small businesses have closed temporarily or permanently, and nearly 8,000 still remain unemployed in the parish according to the Baton Rouge Area Chamber.
But another stimulus is coming, and local businesses, schools, and officials show promise of a bright tomorrow.
Livingston Parish remains one of the best places to live in the capital region, and the economic response shows that.